Greg SweersIn preparation for hurricane season, there are some steps your business should take to protect your data and technology from storm damage.  Hurricane Season just began and runs through November 30, 2016. The NOAA recently came out with their predictions for this year’s hurricane season at about average The forecasts are for 10-16 named storms (including Alex in January), 4-8 hurricanes, and 1-4 major hurricanes.  Having seen the water damage that relatively weak Tropical Storm Colin brought to our area this month, we at ACTS360 want to make sure that we encourage all of our clients to take Hurricane preparedness seriously as we enter into this 2016 Hurricane season.
For Hurricane Preparation, the steps below should be completed before employees are dismissed from work due to a threatening hurricane:

Back Up Your Data - Having data backup procedures in place can play a significant role in protecting your business from a hurricane. Cloud-based storage provides an effective way for your company to keep its data safely removed from your physical location. The consistency and reliability offered by an offsite infrastructure approach can be invaluable in the days following a hurricane.

Protect from Water and Wind - If your business is in a flood zone, and a hurricane has a potential to impact your area, be sure to elevate your CPUs, printers, servers, and other network devices off of the floor when possible.

Protect from Power Issues - Power outages and surges also cause issues for IT equipment. Your server and possibly computers should be plugged into a UPS – uninterruptible power supply – to allow them to keep running for a short time when the primary power source is lost.

After the storm, the steps below should be taken to resume normal computer operation after returning to work:

Initiate Damage Assessment Procedures - Take note of the condition of the computer equipment. If it is visibly damaged or wet, DO NOT plug the equipment in or turn it on.

Verify Electrical Integrity - Computer equipment should not be turned on if electrical power is unstable. Confirm this with your system administrator if you are unsure.

Verify Network Service Availability - Central services such as network connectivity, network file servers, or email servers may not be available. Verify the availability of services with your network administrator before proceeding.

Verify Proper Operation - Return the computer to its original location, plug in all power cords and turn the computer on. Take note of error messages and write them down.

Bottom line- “Be Prepared”

Your business doesn’t need to go out of business as the result of a major storm.  ACTS360 is committed to preparing our clients to protect their business, both in making sure they have the proper technology to meet their current and future needs, and in advising them about safeguarding their businesses from weather-related, cyber and other disasters. Call us at 813-699-5356 to discuss how we can help your business.